Racism from GPs and nurses common, reveals small indigenous survey

Online poll of 120 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people shows two-thirds put off seeking treatment due to discrimination

Indigenous patients report frequently experiencing racism from GPs and nurses, a small survey has found.

Almost two-thirds of those polled had been deterred from seeking treatment due to discrimination, according to the online survey of 120 people by the Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO).

Almost nine out of 10 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people report having experienced racism in the mainstream Victorian medical system, with 16% subjected to it most of the time when seeking treatment, shows the survey carried out in October.

VACCHO acting CEO Trevor Pearce says the results demonstrate why many Aboriginal people delay or avoid seeking medical help.

“It was disappointing to see Aboriginal people who responded to the survey most frequently experienced racism from GPs and nurses,” he said in a statement.

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